I Legnanesi

Legnano (Italy)

A scene of Pover Crist Superstar, whose title transposes in the dialect of Lombardy that of the famous musical by Tom Rice and Andrew L. Webber, put in scene in the theatrical season 2006/2007.The stage designer Alessandra Bortolozzo used the double dimensionality of a backdrop made of ASC1000S - Sceno 1.000 cm muslin painted to represent, with a naif style that is reflected in that of the characters of I Legnanesi, the interior of an old milanese ''railing house'' in its details: the wooden ceiling, the bricks of scabbed walls, the window with the small curtains, the pictures, the commode, the lamp with lens-screen and an ''economic stove'', until the years 1950s the undisputed protagonist of Italian popular homes. Facing the backdrop, some true vintage items: the toilet with reclining mirror, the wrought iron bed, the table.
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The Colombo of Legnano, exhilarating paradigm of the Lombard yester-year family that the texts by Felice Musazzi and Antonio Provasio made famous throughout Italy.The scene is an emblematic situation in which it is admirably summed up even from the scenic point of view the philosophy of the Lombard Group, based on the mixture between the real sociological data (the costumes often taken from daily clothing, authentic furnishings, the use of the dialect) and the absolute fiction (the disguise, the painted backdrop that is hung without care in the hiding of imperfections and folds, to show off, over the fiction, the amateurish origin of the company too).
Working during the day and reciting at night - Felice Musazzi and several of his stage companions were employees at Franco Tosi, a known mechanical industry of Legnano - the dialect Company created a real prototype of Commedia dell'arte that, soaked of healthy and sincere populism, became a representation of the theatrical ''fourth state'', in contrast with the cultured theatre, backed by considerable financial means.A representation that, a bit at a time, after decades of immense popularity among the public, was understood and appreciated also by the critics.Since 1949 I Legnanesi produce a show a year.
Felice Musazzi in the role of ''la Teresa''.To the character of ''the Teresa'' (with the article, like they say in Lombardy), a woman of humble conditions and no instruction but with the common sense of simple people, are given the ungrammatical comicness and satire of modern society, medley of contradictions and incomprehensible injustices to the characters that inhabit the popular courtyards that serve as a background to the events narrated by I Legnanesi.La Teresa was created and interpreted for decades by the same Musazzi that after beginnings that drew often on the improvisation, refined the character characterizing it with irresistible comedians tempos for a not only popular audience.For instance, also Giorgio Strehler was crazy about Musazzi: he didn't hid to consider him «the best Italian actress» and he even decided to propose him a part in one of his Goldonian installation.
A photo taken during the backstage. Quotations from the revue shows and from the curtain-raiser shows are frequent, with the inevitable use of these materials that are the favorite by these theatrical genres. The riser of the steps are covered with MPD - Pelle di Diavolo, colour 2. silver.
The staircase is made of MPD - Pelle di Diavolo, colour 2. silver. The glittering on the background is that of a draped backdrop realized with MPD - Pelle di Diavolo, colour 24. iridescent.
This classic kitsch of Years 1950s revues, is realized in an undergraduate-parish style with a backdrop of clouds painted on ASC1000S - Sceno 1.000 cm muslin and an outline of the Colosseum decorated with inserts of MPD - Pelle di Diavolo, colour 3. gold.At the top of the staircase made of MPD - Pelle di Diavolo, colour silver, in the round of a follow spot and in the role of an unlikely Wanda Osiris (an Italian curtain-raiser actress, famous in the Fifties), is ''La Mabilia'' (Enrico Dalceri), an impudent country maid, a victim of fashions and against the healthy good sense of another generation: a generation to which ''La Teresa'' (Antonio Provasio) and ''Il Giovanni'' (Luigi Campisi) Colombo belong, whose Mabilia is the inconsiderate daughter.
The shape of St. Peter has now replaced that of the Colosseum, the nuns and clergy, instead, the legionaries.The choreographies of the musical interludes are by Sofia Fusco and Enrico Dalceri, co-author of the music together with Arnaldo Ciato. Wings and tops had been manufactured with FBR - Bruxelles velvet, color 6. gold.
The company I Legnanesi was born as a joke in 1949, in an oratory of Legnano, on the initiative of a group of friends led by Felice Musazzi (Parabiago 1921-Legnano 1989).
The exclusively male nature of the company is due to an ancient ecclesiastical ban that prevented to the women to act together with men, so that women's roles were interpreted by the same men in disguise.
The I Legnanesi became famous interpreting some stories of the country, told in dialect from characters taken from life in homes court of the province of Lombardy: «The handrail runs in our soul», says a their famous adage.
Many critics awards, and above all the great appreciation of television public, have consecrated the success of the company, today the cornerstone of the Italian dialect theatre.

Materials used in this production

ASC - Sceno

Muslin and canvas

FBR - Bruxelles

·Limited fabrics·

MPD - Pelle di Diavolo

Metallic aspect fabrics

Information on data processing